Which Country Or U.S. State Will Be The First To Hit The Renewable Energy Wall?


Francis Menton

In the fantasy of wealthy woke environmentalists, the world has recognized that it is on the brink of an existential climate crisis that can only be avoided by rapid elimination of the use of fossil fuels, and the transformation of the world energy economy to be based upon “renewables” like the wind and sun. The generation of electricity will be “decarbonized” by some time in the 2030s, and the world will reach “net zero” carbon emissions by around 2050.

In the real world, anyone with eyes can see that this is not happening. The countries with the large majority of world population (China, India, the remainder of Asia, and Africa) mouth a few platitudes to appease the foolish Western elites, even as they continue to build hundreds of new coal and other fossil fuel facilities. Even the U.S. federal government, under left-wing Democrat control, has had its ambitious “Green New Deal” plans stalled in Congress. Worldwide, fossil fuel usage continues on a steady upward trajectory, pretty much as if the whole decarbonization obsession didn’t exist.

But then there is that handful of very wealthy, small population jurisdictions that have convinced themselves that they can save the planet by eliminating their own fossil fuel use and substituting wind and solar power, even as the rest of the world laughs at them behind their back. Four jurisdictions stand out from the rest, two of them European countries and the other two U.S. states: Germany, the UK, California, and New York. In the aggregate, these four places have population of about 200 million, or about 2.5% or world population. Each of the four has announced draconian targets for net zero carbon emissions by mid-century, with even more stringent interim targets for eliminating carbon emissions from things like electricity generation and home heating.

All these places, despite their wealth and seeming sophistication, are embarking on their ambitious plans without ever having conducted any kind of detailed engineering study of how their new proposed energy systems will work or how much they will cost. Sure, a wind/solar electric grid can function with 100% natural gas backup, if you’re willing to have the ratepayers foot the bill for two overlapping and redundant generation systems when you could have had just one. But “net zero” emissions means no more fossil fuel backup. What’s the plan to keep the grid operating 24/7 when the coal and natural gas are gone?

As these jurisdictions ramp up their wind and solar generation, and gradually eliminate the coal and natural gas, sooner or later one or another of them is highly likely to hit a “wall” — that is, a situation where the electricity system stops functioning, or the price goes through the roof, or both, forcing a drastic alteration or even abandonment of the whole scheme. But which jurisdiction will hit it first, and how will the “wall” emerge?

It’s time for Manhattan Contrarian readers to start placing their bets on this issue. To kick things off, here are a few thoughts from me:

California. I have written several posts highly critical of California’s pie-in-the-sky green energy plans, which include a 2045 “zero carbon” target. For example see here and here. However, California does have a deep secret to help it stave off the possibility of hitting the renewable energy wall: it imports a very high percentage of its power from neighboring states. Some of the imports are fossil fuel based (coal and natural gas from Arizona and Nevada), and some are reliable non-fossil fuel based sources (nuclear from Arizona and hydro from Oregon and Washington).

Here are charts from the California Energy Commission of “total system electric generation” for the state for 2018 and 2020. In 2018 California imported about 32% of its electricity (91,000 GWH out of 285,000 GWH), and in 2020 about 30% (82,000 GWH out of 273,000 GWH). According to data from the EIA, California imports far more electricity from other states than does any other state (although there are a few states that import more on a percentage basis). The ability to import large amounts of electricity from neighboring states means that California has a high degree of insurance against its own energy folly. As long as Arizona, Nevada, Oregon and Washington have some electricity to sell, blackouts can be staved off even though California’s wind and solar generators may be completely quiet. You may say that this is cheating in the game of “zero emissions” electricity, which it is, but don’t count on California’s politicians to level with the voters.

New York. New York’s energy system transformation has been defined by something called the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (Climate Act), passed in 2019. This state website provides a summary of the goals to which this Climate Act has supposedly committed us. The main targets:

  • 85% Reduction in GHG Emissions by 2050
  • 100% Zero-emission Electricity by 2040
  • 70% Renewable Energy by 2030
  • 9,000 MW of Offshore Wind by 2035
  • 3,000 MW of Energy Storage by 2030
  • 6,000 MW of Solar by 2025

Here in New York City, the City Council just this week passed a bill banning natural gas hookups for buildings under seven stories starting in 2024, and for larger buildings starting in 2027. Mayor de Blasio, heading into his last week in office, is expected to sign the bill.

But is there any reality to any of this? My prediction is that, rather than our hitting some kind of wall of a failing energy system or sudden price spikes, these ridiculous targets will just be abandoned and forgotten as they get closer and it becomes obvious that they cannot be achieved. The prototype was a matter involving the natural gas utility in Long Island, National Grid, in 2019. National Grid was running out of natural gas capacity for new customers, particularly in Brooklyn and Queens (parts of New York City that are on Long Island and served by National Grid). National Grid wanted to build a pipeline under New York Harbor to bring in the gas, but Governor Cuomo blocked it on fake environmental grounds (supposedly, threats to water quality). When the existing pipelines hit capacity, National Grid began refusing new natural gas hookups. Within a few weeks, some 3000 people had been refused, and the political blowback began. Facing pressure from actual voters, Cuomo did not relent on the pipeline, but instead threatened to pull NG’s license unless it figured out some other way to bring in the gas. NG began to bring in the gas by truck (much more expensive and dangerous than the pipeline), and as far as I know that is what it continues to do. Here is a New York Times account with more details.

My strong bet is that this scenario repeats itself in 2024 when the City Council’s supposed natural gas ban kicks in. Right now the public is only dimly aware of the coming ban, and paying no attention. But natural gas is hugely superior to electricity for home heat, particularly an area like this where winter temperatures regularly go into the 20s and below, a range at which electric heat pumps basically don’t work at all. People building and renovating homes are acutely aware of this difference, and will push back forcefully when told that they can’t have gas.

Similarly, the goals of the Climate Act for enormous numbers of wind turbines and solar arrays are completely unrealistic, and nobody has even started building any meaningful number of them yet. Moreover, the amount of storage proposed is not even stated in relevant units (should be MWH instead of MW), and storage to last the months that would be needed has not even been invented. These targets are so ridiculous that, I predict, we will never even start very far down the road before they are either dropped or just ignored. Sure, we will spend a few tens of billions first, and everybody’s energy bills will go up substantially, but not to a degree that it will be recognized as a crisis.

Germany and UK. So I’m putting my money on one or the other of Germany or the UK to be the first to hit some kind of wall.

  • Compared to California, they don’t have any good Plan B when the new wind/solar system doesn’t work. Both have banned fracking for natural gas within their own borders, as have most of their near European neighbors. That leaves Russia as the principal backup supplier, and let’s say that the Russkies are somewhat less reliable than Nevada and Arizona.
  • Compared to New York, Germany and the UK have so far actually taken seriously the task of building wind turbines and solar arrays. Germany has gotten its percent of electricity generation from wind and solar up to around 50% for some periods of time (although it fell back to 43% for the first three quarters of 2021 due to lack of wind). Germany’s new coalition government has grand plans to further ramp of the building of wind turbines particularly, while continuing to phase out both nuclear and all fossil fuels, with only Russia to catch them when they fall. In the UK. PM Boris Johnson has become completely obsessed with his “net zero” ambitions, even as low wind has put pressure on limited natural gas supplies and caused prices to spike dramatically.

A prolonged period of unfavorable weather (calm and overcast) could cause a serious energy crunch to hit one or both or Germany or the UK as soon as this winter.

Read the full post here.

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December 19, 2021 2:16 am

My money is on the UK

At least one of the interconnectors is down long term and there isn’t any wind or Sun

Reply to  fretslider
December 19, 2021 5:35 am

Talking about sun, BoJo once believed in solar minimum effect by quoting his climate guru, Piers Corbyn, who btw got arrested today for inciting riots and attacks on MPs.
Here is short video where you can see the old BoJo as a ‘climate change denier’ being nailed by London Assembly Member Jenny Jones, with a full transcript of the discussion and longer BoJo’s video statement further below.

Reply to  Vuk
December 19, 2021 5:57 am

One can only conclude that there is something about the Corbynite genome….

Jenny Jones should try being human.

John Law
Reply to  fretslider
December 20, 2021 5:15 am

Big ask!

Reply to  fretslider
December 19, 2021 7:31 am

I agree on the UK (perhaps Germany) …. my dad and grandparents escaped from Dover England in 1913 and the relative sanity of western Canada.
If Griff is representative of the average brit they are screwed …. even Boris isn’t playing with a full deck IMHO.

Reply to  fretslider
December 19, 2021 11:14 am

Sadly the interconnect is to France which has been importing UK electricity for the last 6 weeks.

France or Germany is at risk, not the UK.

Reply to  fretslider
December 19, 2021 5:27 pm

Yep mine has been on the UK for a while now and they keep upsetting countries on the other end of the interconnectors.

Vincent Causey
Reply to  fretslider
December 20, 2021 12:31 am

I agree. At least Germany is prepared to use coal. Then again, first to fall will be the first to exit.

Joe - dallas
Reply to  fretslider
December 20, 2021 9:07 am

TExas actually got there first.

The Feb 2021 fiasco had multiple causes cumulating with the final fossil fuel failure.

First was the strategic move to increase wind and solar to a 25-30% penetration, forgoing improvements in the fossil fuel reliability. (maintenance and upgrade funds diverted away to renewables).
Secondly the lack of reliability created stability problems,
Third a significant drop on electric production from wind on Feb 12th,
fourth, the sudden drop in frequency at 1am Feb 15th partially tripping the safety mechanism and
fifth the failure to have sufficient fuel to power the gas plants ( not to mention the 9 day failure to supply fuel to the wind turbines – ie no wind for 9 days)

Weylan R McAnally
Reply to  Joe - dallas
December 20, 2021 11:26 am

100% correct. Texas wins the first race, but like NASCAR, there are more races to come. Texas still has the luxury of moderate weather for most winters. Long term, it is a dead heat between Germany and the UK for the title.

December 19, 2021 2:24 am

UK will hit the wall first because they are more depending on other countries.

Reply to  Adriaan
December 19, 2021 4:16 am

I dunno

Germany is pretty dependent on Russia. The same Russia that is an international pariah and on the verge of getting into a shooting war in Ukraine. What will Germany do if the USA and other NATO countries call for comprehensive sanctions on Russia following an invasion of Ukraine, including a ban on their fossil fuel companies? How will Germany keep the lights on without Russian gas?

Komerade Cube
Reply to  Steve4192
December 19, 2021 8:23 pm

Why do the Germans keep electing an East German communist, clearly beholden to Russia, as PM? Are elections in Germany rigged the way they are in The People’s Republic of New Jersey?

Reply to  Adriaan
December 19, 2021 7:52 am

My uninformed estimate of the situation is that the UK is more isolated physically due to being an island, and isolated politically due to no longer part of the EU; the UK has more coastline for more floating wind farms than Germany; and Germany has readier access to Russian gas. Both have plenty of coal should they decide to become physically independent again, but Germany is constrained politically by the EU in that department.

I’ll bet on the UK hitting the wall first, and recovering faster. But these are relative terms and won’t make the process pleasant.

Reply to  Felix
December 19, 2021 11:22 am

UK has no economic coal left. It does have frackable gas, but is constrained politically from exploiting it.
It also has a democracy, and intelligent people. Everyone knows net zero is unsustainable and unaffordable. And we will, in the end, need a load of nukes to achieve energy security.
once Boris and his concubine have been prised out of No 10, which looks imminent, with luck we will get a pragmatist instead.

Reply to  Leo Smith
December 19, 2021 12:09 pm

Thanks for the “economic coal” idea. I had thought the only thing uneconomic and UK coal was the miners unions, largely by their own intentional inefficiency in a shortsighted attempt to preserve numbers of jobs, and that was somewhat fixable by modern techniques. Perhaps the miners now might prefer low numbers of efficient jobs rather than no inefficient jobs.

Reply to  Felix
December 19, 2021 1:08 pm

UK has a new trade deal with Australia. If you were not aware, Australia can put high quality coal into ships fast and efficiently at the going price and make humungous profits. Chinese need a lot of coal to build a wind turbine. Actually wind turbines and their base could be deemed transformed coal.

Not sure if UK still has the ability to get coal out of ships – hope do they unload wood chips for Drax?

Reply to  Leo Smith
December 20, 2021 1:09 pm

“UK has no economic coal left”
Utter bollox, there’s 400 yrs of it left, some of it under Drax which burns imported crap from the USA instead.

Reply to  pigs_in_space
December 20, 2021 8:09 pm

I am afraid this is a common myth.

The coal is there, but its deep cast mining and the seams are thin.

The cost of reopening or digging new pits and working them, when the US and Australia have meters thick seams they can simply scrape up in buckets renders the whole thing pointless economically.

UK mines closed because they cost to much to keep open. Not because there wasn’t coal there or because of the unions.

alastair gray
Reply to  Adriaan
December 19, 2021 11:02 am

We in the UK will hit the wall first purely because of the single minded boneheadedness- or malice- of all of our political class of whichever party. When in the EU we implemented every EU diktat mindlessly and to our detriment while countries like France, Italy and Germany just quietly ignored them and got on with life

We now carry on with Boris Net Zero whereas as on this day the wind supplied 1 GW out of a nameplate capacity of 24GW

In 2020 all of our wind energy delivered a capacity factor of about 30% about average for the year of 8 GW IT will be worse for this miserable year

So much for mendacious claims that in the “Saudi Arabia of wind” we have a capacity factor of 60%

What do you think Griff? Do I lie? or do they? or do you?

Reply to  Adriaan
December 19, 2021 11:16 am

Wrong assumption. Germany is the most dependent on foreign countries.Thanks to gridwatch, the state of UK power is an open book. Germany lies about its issues.

Reply to  Adriaan
December 19, 2021 12:07 pm

The UK will hit the wall first if Carrie remains in N0.10???

John Law
Reply to  Adriaan
December 20, 2021 5:21 am

Only virtual dependence; we have massive shale and North Sea Natgas reserves blocked by idiot.

Reply to  Adriaan
December 20, 2021 1:07 pm

And because they have a fishy war with with France who already has been threatening to cut off electrons to the Channel islands.

Macron the Jupiter is off to the presidential stuff next.
Watch 2022 and get the popcorn maching running!

Willem Post
December 19, 2021 2:29 am

Texas and California have already hit the RE wall, mainly because of rabid, Socialist Dem/Prog RE folks forcing utilities to do things, which they know would

1) Destabilize the grid
2) Create havoc during extreme conditions, such as heat waves and snow storms, lack of wind, lack of solar.

Right now, it is snowing in New England. It started at noon yesterday.
About 10 inches is on my driveway, and on the MONEY-LOOSING solar panels of my neighbors. HA, HA

There will be NO SOLAR for at least week in most of New England.
Also, at night, there is almost always no wind in New England.

Plus, the RE idiots want to close gas and nuclear plants, and deny new gas pipelines and new oil and gas storage systems.


Germany and Denmark could NEVER have a high wind percentage, if they were not connected to the Norway, Sweden, and Finland grids

Here are two articles, that explain all in detail.



Reply to  Willem Post
December 19, 2021 4:22 am

I can’t for the life of me think of why so many northern states/countries invest so heavily in solar. Solar CAN be a useful peripheral power source in the right climate at the right latitude, but it makes no damn sense investing in it in regions that are closer to the Arctic circle than the equator.

Reply to  Steve4192
December 19, 2021 1:42 pm

In the US RE investment is governed by tax credits. Who cares that it doesn’t make any sense and everyone pays more but if you can get a better risk free return go for it!
Warped economics, eh?

Reply to  yirgach
December 19, 2021 6:27 pm

Which explains my hybrid minivan.

Reply to  Steve4192
December 20, 2021 1:12 pm

Yep they just installed a sh..t load of solar in Estonia at 60N!
You can’t make it up!
It generates FA at the moment especially as it’s all covered in snow drifts!

Reply to  Willem Post
December 19, 2021 4:30 am

There is a church near me that spent $150k on rooftop solar, half of the panels face south toward the Sun, the others face east. Right now they are under 5 inches of snow.

They have a large, well educated congregation, did no one object to this wasteful investment?

Reply to  Klem
December 19, 2021 5:02 am

They probably got a large bung from the”government”, after all it’s only other peoples money. It’s not as if it’s costing the “government” anything.

Reply to  Disputin
December 19, 2021 8:07 am

Where are the separation of church and state people?

Reply to  guest
December 19, 2021 1:19 pm

That separation has never been more than window dressing.

paul courtney
Reply to  guest
December 19, 2021 3:24 pm

Dems are very ready to hand out dispensations to churches that follow the state religion.

Reply to  Klem
December 19, 2021 6:29 pm

They got a great rebate. And they can virtue signal.

Reply to  Klem
December 20, 2021 10:23 am

Our Church looked into rooftop solar (we hava a massive south-facing roof in coastal Southern California). My wife worked with the solar-power company and worked the numbers. The solar-power company would have loved to do the installation, but both they and my wife agreed that the numbers just didn’t pencil out. So, no solar panels.

Doug Huffman
Reply to  Willem Post
December 19, 2021 5:02 am

At 45ºN in Lake Michigan I was asked to do a back-of-envelope estimate of the size of solar water heater for our largest heat load, a community swimming pool. The field would have to be larger than the pool facility and the idea was abandoned.

Then came da coof and space rationing and the pool is almost unused – but still heated with propane.

Rod Evans
December 19, 2021 2:38 am

Well today as I type this, the Saudi Arabia of Wind power, also known as the UK, we are producing all of 1.3GW of wind power, That comes from our 25 GW rated standing capacity our fleet of wind turbines is rated at. Yesterday was virtually the same and tomorrow will be the same. The fog is clearing a little now as the time here approaches 10.30 am. I am not sure if the reducing fog is a result of the air being stirred by the powered up wind turbines currently spinning, consuming grid power or if it’s the sun trying to break through? Either way, the impact of high pressure periods here in the UK in winter can not be hidden.
If I was a betting man my money on who will be first to stop this green fixation with energy and CO2 production will be Germany. Here in the UK we have to solve why hundreds of dinghies turn up in our southern shores every day, before we get to sorting out energy….

Ben Vorlich
Reply to  Rod Evans
December 19, 2021 6:17 am

I’m looking forward to the Christmas ” snow bomb” due to hit the UK.**
As we know the UK can’t cope with more than a light dusting of snow. Recent events show that the transmission system can’t cope with severe weather. So depending how much snow, cold and wind we get it could lead to interesting times.

** Only in the reaction of politicians, greens and Griff

alastair gray
Reply to  Rod Evans
December 19, 2021 11:45 am

We wail from a similar minaret you and I! to be frightfully woke about it all.
Happy Christmas and I pray for the lights to go off now in Britain because if they delay much longer we may never get them on again

Climate believer
December 19, 2021 3:06 am

“Germany has gotten its percent of electricity generation from wind and solar up to around 50% for some periods of time (although it fell back to 43% for the first three quarters of 2021 due to lack of wind).”

So when we’re all wind and solar what happens then?

You can talk about adding more mega giggers of windmills till you’re red in the face, or untill your country is blanketed with these toxic structures, like Germany, but if the wind isn’t there, you ain’t producing sh@t.

Behold the ridiculous becalmed world of wind power:

net generation wind onshore Germany.png
Climate believer
Reply to  Climate believer
December 19, 2021 3:09 am

…the UK…well…

UK energy policy.png
Reply to  Climate believer
December 19, 2021 1:23 pm

The weight on the end of the limb assures the saw won’t bind in the cut.

Reply to  Climate believer
December 19, 2021 4:19 am

So when we’re all wind and solar what happens then?”

You jump on a bicycle – raised off the ground with a dynamo fitted – and pedal like mad.

Griff might be rushing to claim the patent….

Reply to  Climate believer
December 19, 2021 6:45 am

Remember that as they continue to build out wind and solar, more and more marginal locations have to be used. As a result average utilization is going to drop. Sometimes dramatically.

Reply to  MarkW
December 19, 2021 7:57 am

Also more scenic places, first only ruined scenic views from background turbines, then the scenic spots themselves. That may be when the ordinary person first gets some visceral reaction to the blight.

Reply to  MarkW
December 19, 2021 9:50 am

When you’re sucking on the government (taxpayer’s) tit, you don’t care if what you’re doing makes sense or not. That’s why Buffet invests in wind farms. What I can’t wrap my head around is how so many people can be SO STUPID! What in the world will it take to have people open their eyes (and then what passes for their brains) to the actual data and the actual science. I know politicians are generally stupid,but the mass media really have serious sins to atone for.

Joe Gordon
Reply to  DrEd
December 19, 2021 11:29 am

Journalism died when the newspapers failed to handle the challenge of the internet. At that point, everyone could get information from millions of online sources, and “journalists” started distinguishing themselves by writing opinion pieces rather than gathering news.

As a result, the profession became more a blogging thing, and the new journalists coming out of colleges were more interested in blathering on about their thoughts and feelings. They had no idea how reporting worked.

Today, there are very few in the media who even remember what journalism was before the internet took hold. And even fewer that care. Which is why they’re the ones calling for the torches and pitchforks rather than any kind of reason. They will print what their government masters tell them to print.

Weylan R McAnally
Reply to  Joe Gordon
December 20, 2021 11:40 am

What killed both journalism and legacy media (newspapers, magazines) was pure hubris. When newspapers had no competition, they did anything they wanted and saw no negative impacts.

Best example – endorsing political candidates. In many areas, endorsing the wrong political party will piss off 1/2 of your readers. In the past, the pissed off customer had no other options and continued their subscriptions. Now they cancel the subscription and find their news elsewhere. The craziest thing is that newspapers are still endorsing political candidates. Pure hubris.

And you are correct that nearly every “news” story is actually an opinion piece sprinkled with a few actual “news” facts.

Reply to  Climate believer
December 19, 2021 8:54 am

So when we’re all wind and solar what happens then?

I think, according to history, that is when people start burning the furniture for warmth.

Reply to  AWG
December 19, 2021 11:24 am

and eating their pets….

Phillip Bratby
December 19, 2021 3:12 am

My money is on the UK, and very very soon. Nuclear, coal and gas power stations are closing due to age and/or government mandates. No new dispatchable power stations are being built (except one white elephant EPR), whilst more and more expensive and unreliable wind farms and solar farms are being built. It is 100% lunacy, but politicians listen to the greenblob (and to Princess Nut Nut), not to engineers.

December 19, 2021 3:23 am

You forgot Australia. Pretty much all of the South-East, but especially South Australia, which demonstrated in 2016 exactly what happens when you do these stupid things. From space, South Australia looked exactly like North Korea; black as a greenie’s heart.

December 19, 2021 3:29 am

As with most people so far, my money is on the UK and very soon, probably early in 2022 when the cold really sets in and the days are still all the way across Europe

We are far too exposed to Green idiocy and BoJo buffoonery

Reply to  Redge
December 19, 2021 3:31 am

Thank goodness for gas – at least as long as it lasts

Screenshot 2021-12-19 113004.jpg
Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 3:33 am

Massachusetts is another net zero by ’50 state. But, nobody wants wind turbines on land. And now there are battles raging over solar farms. The enviros who pushed so hard for clean and green energy have finally understood it’ll mean the destruction of a few hundred thousand acres of forests in this tiny state. Of course I told them that a decade ago when a solar farm was built next to my neighborhood. But few enviros live in my neck of the woods, north central MA, which is mostly “Trump country”- so they didn’t listen at the time.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 3:41 am

Isn’t this where Pocahontas resides?

Reply to  Derg
December 19, 2021 4:09 am

Nope. She was buried in St George’s Church, Gravesend, England. A statue of her remains there.

Reply to  HotScot
December 19, 2021 4:54 am

I think Derg was referring to “Fauxahontas”.

Reply to  HotScot
December 19, 2021 6:04 am

Thanks for that, I didn’t know Pocahontas actually existed, I thought she was fictional I’m embarrassed to say.

Reply to  HotScot
December 19, 2021 6:09 am

I was referring to the fake one, Liz Warren, but thank you for the information.

Reply to  Derg
December 19, 2021 5:02 pm

Sorry, my US politics could use some brushing up.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 8:59 am

The enviros who pushed so hard for clean and green energy have finally understood it’ll mean the destruction of a few hundred thousand acres of forests in this tiny state. 

Aren’t forests natural carbon-dioxide vacuums? Or is this purely a one variable equation: reduce CO2 production.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  AWG
December 19, 2021 10:56 am

That’s what the climatistas want- lock up the forests to do nothing but sequester all that evil plant food. After all, they already have nice wood homes, wood furniture and tons of paper products.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 2:28 pm

Which makes no biological sense since new growth forests extract far more CO2 than old growth forests, and lumber built into houses sequesters that CO2 for 50 to 200 years. Mature forests (known as old-growth by enviro-idiots) are about a wash when it comes to CO2, as the decaying leaves tend to emit as much CO2 as the trees consume.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  OweninGA
December 19, 2021 4:46 pm

the idiots who want to lock up all the forests claim it as a new principle- “proforestation”- invented by Dr. Bill Moomaw- who in the early days of the IPCC wrote some of its papers- he’s a “physical chemist” so he thinks that makes him an expert on the climate and forests – he’s very influential amongst the climatistas in the Ivy League universe

Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 3:51 am

Off topic, but I found this great quote of Charles Darwin:

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”

Then I found out he never said that. But it sounds like something he could have said and it makes sense and it’s highly relevant to the “climate crisis” non debate.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 3:56 am

Here is what Darwin said :

On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life (1859)

It should be pretty clear who was favored then, and who now …
Currying favor is an old imperial habit.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  bonbon
December 19, 2021 4:04 am

I doubt Darwin was a racist.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 4:23 am

As he wrote in his diary, the entire idea comes from Malthus, the first professor of economics at the British East India Company Haileybury school.
Malthus plagiarized from Ortes.
Today the Green New Deal, NetZero are radical Malthusian depopulation programs – social darwinism.

Joao Martins
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 7:59 am

Very off the subject!…

You must read his works (in particular, the “Origin…” and the “Variation … under domestication”) to understand that those “races” are not referring to humans, but to different “variations”, “subspecies”, “varieties”, “forms”, etc. of any species. Darwin’s heredity was somewhat “magical”, he was contemporary of Mendel and the diffusion of Mendel’s work took place after Darwin’s death. So he is somewhat “slippery” when he addresses tha variation in nature; he uses several words to refer to those “variants”; one of these words is “races”.

Joseph: I agree with you. Reading the “Voyage…” you can understand very well that he was not racist, since his youth and from his heart. And I cannot remember any statement that would be classifiable as “white supremacist” either.

Joao Martins
Reply to  bonbon
December 19, 2021 8:30 am

bonbon, Darwin said a lot more things pertaining to the subject… that book is 450 pages long and he wrote at least 10 times that number of other pages where there is matter related to which survive and which not.

Reply to  Joao Martins
December 19, 2021 9:12 am

Bonobo’s knowledge on most subjects is only paper thin. It’s limited to the Marxist playbook for attacking everything that can be credited to the West.

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 4:47 am

Joseph Zorzin

December 19, 2021 3:51 am
” “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” “

The above seems and it could be like an interpretation of some conclusions and findings of Darwin’s theory of evolution of species.

Another way to interpret the same, probably;

“It is not the strength of the size or the numbers of a population of a specie(s) deciding the survival and evolution of the fittest, nor the “smartness”.
It is the main attributes evolved and grown continually for best performance in efficiency,
flexibility-stability and growth… towards the best environment adaptation to challenges and competition.”

To humanity, intelligence is the main and higher defining attribute. Smartness alone, no so much.
For the intelligence to keep evolving and performing accordingly, it requires the stability-persistence and preserving-protecting and growth of the “database records”, the history.
It comes from it, it grows flourishes and evolves on it.

Cancel culture, cancel history, cancel knowledge, cancel identity, through dogma or whatever other ideological selectivity, may seem smart and fun, but ain’t intelligible… in contrary.


Joao Martins
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 8:25 am

I can’t remember seeing “adaptable” being used by Darwin, so the statement is most probably a wrong attribution.

Being “adaptable” seems to me a very strange concept to fit in Darwin’s framework of evolution. Because “being adaptable” is a characteristic of the subject, something grossly (not even truly) Lamarkian.

Darwin, on the other hand, discusses (in the “Origin…” at length, and elsewhere) what is the basis of “fitness”: what makes an organism to be “fit”, i.e., survive and have its offspring surviving. He indicates “something” that must be inherited, even if it is not evident (present) in parents. My idea is that, in Darwin’s mind, organisms could become “adapted” but were not “adaptable”, “adaptation” being something to be acknowledged only a posteriori, i.e., after reproduction with survival: they survived and reproduced under changed conditions, then they are “adapted” to those conditions. I used the present tense to avoid confusion: for Darwin, adaptation is a result of selection and survival of random “variations”, not the outcome of an external influence modifying the “heredity” of an organism so that its descent would be more adjusted to those external conditions: thus, organisms are not “adaptable” in this sense.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Joao Martins
December 19, 2021 8:31 am

the reason the incorrect quote of Darwin caught my attention is the concept of adaption by the species to conditions- rather than trying to change the conditions- as in the climate concern- I can only wonder where Darwin would stand today in this concern- would he panic over a trivial change in temperature?

Joao Martins
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 10:01 am

I am not a medium or a psychic to be able to ask him wherever he is now, but my guess is he would not panic.

He was a very careful researcher, just remember the 2nd paragraph of the Introduction to the “Origin…”:

“My work is now (1859) nearly finished; but as it will take me
many more years to complete it, and as my health is far from
strong, I have been urged to publish this Abstract.”

… An “Abstract” 450 pages long…

I often ask, “Do you know what is the geographical directionof the holes of earthworms?” Well, he knew; he asked some of his correspondents from everywhere to check that for him…

Regarding your introduction to your question. I think Darwin saw nature as a whole, all species equal. (note: I also think he was rather conservative in what we now call “social sciences”) When discussing corals and earthworms, it is clear that he was aware and gave the due attention to the fact that organisms live by/while changing their environment. Of course, as he had studied geology; when speaking of fossils or corals, he sees something created by living organisms. But those changes were not “purposeful”: earthworms borrow the soil not to make it more porous or to achieve any other stated objective; clams do not have shells so that they pile up to make mountains after they die. And as a consequence, natural selection (NS) was blind.

I often say that NS is like gravity: this is NOT a force external to matter, it is one manifestation of the existence of matter. So is natural selection: it does not “act” upon organisms, as most of my biologist colleagues usually say, for the very simple reason that it does not exist if there are no organisms: it is a manifestation of the existence of organisms. In a changing environment, some die, some thrive: those that survive are the outcome of NS (outcome that you only can know a posteriori). Which survive? One never knows a priori… one potentially better adapted to cold weather because it has a thicker skin was crushed in a landslide and died… it could be “fitter” then the “fittest” which survived but he died before reproducing. The struggle for life is this: plants making roots grow towards water, animals picking fruits from trees, eating grass, borrowing to find food like the moles do; and also bloodly engaging others that dispute the same food or space or mates. The struggle for life is the fight of each organisms against its environment to get the necessary for survival.

So, “adaptation” does not mean changing (purposefully) the conditions. This may apply to humans, but it is out of the realm of NS: it is in the scope of sociology, it is a social procedure resulting from a social design based on a social accumulation of knowledge. In Darwin’s thought, a species becomes adapted as the outcome of innumerable events of selection of random variations.

Now, in the role of a medium, and questioning Darwin wherever he may be now, I would say that his position would be stating firmly “I don’t know” while collecting all the scientific information available about climate, criticizing it, discarding the BS (he states that very often, though with more polite words) and going on saying “I don’t know” while the matter would not be satisfactorily explained. Meanwhile, he would suggest continuing our lives and activities considering only what is scientifucally sound knowledge. That is to say, he would discard (as BS) the “precautionary principles”: what you know, you know; what you don’t know does not matter: either it does not exist or, if it exists, you do not know how it behaves and how to interact with it.

Sorry for being this long but … it is a subject very dear to me.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Joao Martins
December 19, 2021 10:59 am

yes indeed, a very important and interesting topic- relevant to many other “big questions”- in particular, I’m curious about evolution elsewhere in the universe- I’d love to see a book called “Comparative Evolution in the Milky Way”. Perhaps an alien will leave off a copy for us.

Reply to  Joao Martins
December 19, 2021 11:00 am

Charles Darwing.

The Origin of Species.

CHAPTER V… Laws of Variation:
(dimmed as Laws, not hypothesis.)
How much direct effect difference of climate, food, etc., produces on any being is extremely doubtful. My impression is, that the effects are extremely small in the case of animals, but perhaps rather more in that of plants. We may, at least, safely conclude that such influences cannot have produced the many striking and complex co-adaptation of structure between one organic being and another, which we see everywhere throughout nature.

Further more;

CHAPTER III…. Struggle for Existence:

I have called this principle, by which each slight variation, if useful, is preserved, by the term
Natural Selection.

We have seen that man by selection can certainly produce great results, and can adapt organic beings to his own uses, through accumulation of slight but useful variations, given to him by the hand of Nature.
But Natural Selection, as we shall hereafter see, is a power incessantly ready for action, and is as immeasurably superior to man’s feeble efforts, as the works of Nature are to those of Art.”

CHAPTER “IV”… Natural Selection:

Can we wonder, then, that nature’s productions should be far ‘truer’ in character than man’s productions, that they should be infinitely better adapted to the most complex conditions of life, and should plainly bear the stamp of far higher workmanship?”



Joao Martins
Reply to  whiten
December 19, 2021 1:17 pm

You touch a point that I am studying for many years (and not yet concluded): I suspect that Darwin used artificial selection as a metaphor of natural selection, and did not consider both as being of the same nature. Because artificial selection is directed, while natural selection is not. If you want a dog with longer ears, you will generation after generation eliminate the dogs with shorter ears and reproduce the others. This is called “selection pressure”. I doubt that such a thing exists in natural selection: the fittest in one generation may be not the fittest of a previous generation, because the current conditions changed “at random”, so to say; that is, that “pressure” is not present always in the same direction (selecting the same traits; sorry for the telegraphic and somewhat inaccurate style). I.e., artificial selection eliminates the inherent randomness of natural selection, thus its metaphoric use. Darwin’s writing style is clear, but has many deep layers: just think about what he intended to mean with that expression that you copied, “Can we wonder, then”. With the “infinitely” and the “higher workmanship”, it seems that he is poiting to what I suspect, and saying: “Look, Chapter I was a metaphor, this one is the real thing”.

By the way, Re you note about “laws”: mind the fact that “laws” of nature, scientific “laws”, etc., had a very different meaning in mid-19th century as compared with its use nowadays. And that happens in the chapter you cited. I would say that the modern equivalent would be “rules”, as in “as a rule”; definitely not what you remarked (as opposed to hypotheses).

Reply to  Joao Martins
December 19, 2021 4:16 pm

All due respect to your opinions and suspicions,

But I simple quoted Darwin.

It is self explanatory… when it comes to adaptation and evolution of species… it is there mentioned.

And there is more, far more than just in the selected paragraphs.

The theoretical part or point in the Darwin’s Origin of Species, it is only the contemplation of the Origin, the rest of it is factual and representative in fact of the evolution of the species… analyses and conclusions firmly based in observation and offered as Laws or Rules governing Natural Evolution…
(which to a degree would hold true even for evolution of non organic or non life “species”)

And as far as my understanding permits, the simple theoretical conclusion or stand point of Darwin on that one is, “very difficult for not saying impossible to tell with any affordable certainty, the true Origin for any specific specie”.

Under Natural Selection meaning, the fittest are the natural variant products (variations) that are better adapted to the most complex conditions of life. (in the struggle for existence)


Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 12:16 pm

I doubt that Charles Darwin said (or wrote) that. In his theory the significant factor is not adaptation, it is evolution.

Joao Martins
Reply to  Mike Jonas
December 19, 2021 12:47 pm

You are right. Evolution is, and its “cause”, natural selection. “Adaptation” is not a factor, in a Darwinian framework: it is the opposite, it is a “result”, a consequence. There are thousands of pages in the biological literature, most of them useless, discussing Better or worse adaptations. The concept is not useful: organisms struggle for life, not no be better adapted: if they can live, survive, then they are well enough adapted.

Conditions change: an earthquake (as Darwin witnessed in Santiago, Chile) can carry organisms away from where they usually lived; a volcano;… they may be carried long distances by a tempest, or on a log floating on the sea, etc.: some will survive, some will not. The survivors are (we can almost say “by definition”) the fittest. They are fit for the new conditions; their kin which did not survive were not “fit”, i.e., they did not possess those small variations which would enable them to thrive in the changed conditions. Nothing of this is a matter of “adaptation”, it is “survival” (struggle for life).

December 19, 2021 3:58 am

Someone put me down for $100 on the U.K.

David Dibbell
December 19, 2021 4:09 am

Good article. I live in upstate NY. It will not be fun, but at least I have wood heat for backup.

“Right now the public is only dimly aware of the coming ban, and paying no attention.”

And there you have it. Meanwhile, the media-amplified climate messaging about bad weather suppresses the expression of good sense by many who know better.

All the more reason to take courage and speak out.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  David Dibbell
December 19, 2021 4:34 am

“the media-amplified climate messaging about bad weather”

Today’s Boston Globe has an article blaming the likely non white Christmas on climate change- and thus, on all you fossil fuel lovers! /s

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  David Dibbell
December 19, 2021 8:34 am

“wood heat for backup”
Get a pellet stove, you’ll love it. The attached photo is of one owned by a friend- very nice indeed, throws a lot of heat and easier to burn pellets than logs with less to clean up- unless as in your case, you live in a wooded area with easy access to wood?

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 11:17 am

Be sure to put a computer style UPS to plug the pellet stove into. If power goes out, and you do not have another secondary automatic electrical power supply, your pellet stove will not work.

A decent sized UPS should get you through a day or more if the unit does not have a fan. With fan, better to do the calculations.

UPS = Uninterruptable Power Supply.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Drake
December 19, 2021 11:49 am

hmmm… here I kept think that with a pellet stove I’d need a generator- never thought of using a UPS- though I’ve used those for decades

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 2:36 pm

Pellet stoves need some kind of mechanism to feed the pellets into the burner. Even gravity feed needs something to open up the valve.

David Dibbell
Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
December 19, 2021 11:18 am

I do have access to wood, with a small quantity of cordwood on hand for power outages over the coming season. I used to burn much more. Anyway, I recently bought a basket for the woodstove in which pellets can be burned. Haven’t tried it yet though.

Reply to  David Dibbell
December 19, 2021 10:04 am

My bet is on Great Britain. Current situation there portends the inevitable crisis: https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2021/12/17/no-wind-friday/.

My concern is New York and I am trying hard to derail the NY plan. I believe that when people get wind of what is coming at them that they will don yellow vests and start protesting. Because most New Yorkers are unaware of the law and very few understand the implications, I have prepared the Citizens Guide to the Climate Act https://reformingtheenergyvisioninconvenienttruths.com/citizens-guide-to-the-new-york-climate-act/annotated-citizens-guide-to-the-climate-act-page/

You can help me by reviewing my attempt to provide an overview for the general public and sending me any comments or suggestions. nypragmaticenvironmentalist@gmail.com


David Dibbell
Reply to  Roger Caiazza
December 19, 2021 11:19 am

Thank you, will do. I appreciate your efforts on this!

David More
Reply to  David Dibbell
December 19, 2021 8:31 pm

David – “Right now the public is only dimly aware of the coming ban, and paying no attention.”

Seems the New York State Reliability Council has a study out on your prospects

NYS DPS/NYSERDA “Initial Report on the New York Power Grid Study Appendix E, Zero Emissions Electric Grid in New York by 2040 Study” 1/19/2021

CAC Presentation 8 The study shows a 2040 reserve requirement of ≈ 50,000 MW in order to meet the CLCPA 2040 goals and the NYSRC Resource Adequacy Reliability Criterion 2040 Resources & Load – Initial Scenario • Total resources = 88,337 MW • Peak load = 38,000 MW

Therefore: • Total reserves ≈ 50,000 MW to reliably serve load • Current reserve requirement is ≈ 6,600 MW

Seems they are thinking a little more construction is needed to add 43,400 MW of reserves.

David Dibbell
Reply to  David More
December 20, 2021 4:11 am

It will be the height of insanity should the future excess wind and solar resources be given priority on clear windy days, requiring the pre-existing reliable hydro and nuclear sources to be curtailed.

Charles Fairbairn
December 19, 2021 4:11 am

Here in the U.K. there is an underlying strategy in the the roll out of smart meters which eventually will become more or less financially mandatory. It has already cost a great deal of money. This, theoretically will enable demand to be controlled in real time ; but will result in great inconvenience to individuals as their energy supply becomes totally erratic.
Also I understand that contracts are being put in place with companies to make available their in-house emergency fossil fuel generators in the event of grid supply problems. Again with large costs involved which eventually feed through to energy bills and covert taxation.

I therefore don’t think it will be a brick wall that will be hit in the U.K.; but it will take time before the pushback puts a stop to all the nonsense through voter influence. In the meantime a great deal of damage will have been done and the recovery will be slow and onerous.

However, with our reliance on imported energy from others through inter connectors so high, anything could happen.

Reply to  Charles Fairbairn
December 19, 2021 11:30 am

THE UK IS NORT RELIANT ON ENERGY IMPORTS for the 1000th time. In fact at the moment it is a net exporter. It imports solely because if France is giving away surplus nuclear power and Germany cant shed its solar excpt at zero cost, why not save gas and import it?

Reply to  Leo Smith
December 19, 2021 6:35 pm

The UK imports 36% of its natural gas and all of its wood pellets. I think it imports coal. It imports electricity from four countries.

Coeur de Lion
December 19, 2021 4:25 am

As I write UK wind is four per cent of demand and there’s another two three days of high pressure to come. Wrap up

December 19, 2021 4:37 am

Malthus, professor of political economy at the British East India Company Haileybury shool wrote :

Instead of recommending cleanliness to the poor, we should encourage contrary habits. In our towns we should make the streets narrower, crowd more people into the houses, and court the return of the plague. In the country we should build our villages near stagnant pools, and particularly encourage settlements in all marshy and unwholesome situations. But above all, we should reprobate specific remedies for ravaging diseases: and those benevolent, but much mistaken men, who have thought they were doing a service to mankind by projecting schemes for the total extirpation of particular disorders. If by these and similar means the annual mortality were increased … we might probably every one of us marry at the age of puberty and yet few be absolutely starved.

And today, removing stable electricity.
So we have the demonic spectacle of Malthusian depopulation policy in the UK, and a plague with lockdowns. It sure looks like a very old struggle for survival in the Scepter’d Isle.
And in Germany which adopted Malthus’ policies in the 1930’s.
And in the USA which imported these policies.

Reply to  bonbon
December 19, 2021 5:06 am

Heidegger, much embraced in all transatlantic Uni’s, wrote in 1954 “The Question Concerning Technology.”
“Modern technology puts to nature the unreasonable demand that it supply energy which can be extracted and stored as such…. Air is now set upon to yield nitrogen, the earth to yield ore, ore to yield uranium … to yield atomic energy.
Heidegger then argued that the solution was to link human society to unreliable energy flows, and he praised windmills because they “do not unlock energy in order to store it.”

This Heidegger, Hi*tlers ghost writer, even after Nueremberg in 1954, wrote the recipe. Nitrogen there is a reference to the Haber-Bosch process for fertilizers, today threatened by energy breakdown.

Bruce Cobb
December 19, 2021 4:38 am

Last one off the energy cliff’s a rotten egg! Wheeeeeeeee!

December 19, 2021 4:52 am

When you’re more than 40 degrees north and the sun is 20+ south you ain’t gonna get much out of solar . Germany and England ? Fuggedaboutit . California makes more sense at least . But the ridiculous practice of using nameplate capacity for wind and solar output is totally misleading . 6mw of solar ? First off there’s night so it goes to 3mw . Then we have The reality that the panels will only produce a percentage of what it’s rated ( under totally ideal circumstances, like sun 90 degrees overhead ) , combined with low morning and afternoon sun vs midday .. so we’re really down to maybe 1500 mw .

Reply to  Garboard
December 19, 2021 9:19 am

Knowing how the sun low in the sky makes solar gain much less than in the summer with sun high in the sky, and having 13 days in January in an no power spot in an Arizona State Park, I have invested in a generator which I can run for up to four hours a day. I don’t trust the low sun and short days to provide enough power to replenish my batteries through my rooftop solar. Now if those living in much northern latitudes like the UK could get that simple enough formula then maybe much of this craziness would go away.

Ed Zuiderwijk
December 19, 2021 4:54 am

A proof of concept exercise would be to shut down all Californian interconnectors at the same time, say for three days or a week “for maintenance”.

December 19, 2021 4:56 am

I’ll post this again because I think it’s relevant to the topic.

There’s a fundamental economic issue about the cost and supply of energy which doesn’t seem to penetrate the minds of many politicians, and perhaps most people in general. I think that most people probably understand that there are basic requirements in life, such as adequate food supplies, clothing, shelter and basic medial care. However, all requirements in modern civilizations, whether they are basic necessities or unnecessary ‘show-off’ products that are produced to satisfy the vanity and the ego of both the relatively wealthy and the extremely wealthy, require energy supplies.

In other words, the prosperity and well-being of every person on the planet is totally dependent upon the cost of energy supplies and the ways we use those energy supplies.

If the actual, true, cost of energy rises, for whatever reason, then the ‘average’ standard of living must fall proportionally, unless there is an increase in the efficiency of the use of that energy which can compensate for the increased cost.

The term ‘average’ is important because it doesn’t include the social inequalities of wealth. The cost of energy could rise but the standard of living of the rich could remain the same, but the relatively poor would become even more poor. That’s another issue.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Vincent
December 19, 2021 2:27 pm

Well, the AOCs, Bernies and Warrens of the world have a solution: Simply tax away all that immoral wealth and distribute it to the deserving. The only problem is that that has been attempted many times around world before and it has failed each time. I assume that if we got rid of human nature it might work, but there would be nobody around to verify its efficacy. Schrodinger’s Cat wouldn’t have anybody around to see if it were alive or dead, poor thing.

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 19, 2021 7:52 pm

As I mentioned, the distribution of wealth is another issue, and there has always been endless bickering over ‘who gets how much of the cake’.

However, the fundamental point that should get more focus, is that the total wealth of the whole of humanity is dependent on the cost of energy and the ways we use that energy.

For example, the cost of energy in one country might be expensive, but the industries are able to use that energy in an efficient and sensible way to provide a reasonable standard of living for everyone. However, another country might have very cheap energy, but uses that energy inefficiently and wastefully, due to incompetence and corruption, and internal conflicts and so on, which result in a very poor quality of life for most citizens.

One potential way of using energy more efficiently is the development of the Electric Vehicle. They are cheaper to maintain and cheaper to run, as long as the cost of electricity doesn’t soar as a result of unwise dependence on inefficient renewable energy sources.

Of course there are other problems associated with the mining of Lithium and rare-earth metals which are currently necessary for the production of batteries, such as the exploitation of child labour and the expense of responsibly recycling the used batteries and extracting the precious metals for reuse. However, these are social issues that will continue to exist in many different areas regardless of the production of EVs, at least if the social problems are not successfully addressed.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Vincent
December 19, 2021 10:32 pm

A thought experiment Vincent: A high penetration of plug-in EVs used for commuting. A massive rush hour blizzard. Daylong gridlock (happens frequently). EV batteries depleted. People freezing with nobody able to help.

Or how about: Many travelers on Northern Tier highway driving EVs. Massive blizzard halting travel (happens frequently). EV batteries depleted. People freezing with nobody able to help.

Or: High penetration of plug-in EVs used for commuting in Las Vegas. Temperatures above 115 F during rush hour traffic. EV batteries depleted. Temperatures about 140 F in cabs of vehicles. Nobody able to help.

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 20, 2021 1:44 am

Anyone capable of thought experiments should be aware of, and consider, those negative effects you’ve mentioned, when they make a decision whether or not to buy an EV.

One solution does not necessarily fit all circumstances. If you’re a farmer or explorer, a standard two-wheel-drive vehicle is probably not the right choice. You need a 4-wheel-drive for the rough roads, and/or no roads at all.

For many people living in suburbs, who commute to the city, or visit parks and gardens near the city during weekends, rarely travelling more than 100 km in a day, an EV might be the best choice, even in extreme heat or cold.

Komerade Cube
Reply to  Dave Fair
December 19, 2021 9:01 pm

>>>Well, the AOCs, Bernies and Warrens of the world have a solution: Simply tax away all that immoral wealth and distribute it to the deserving.<<< and AOC, Bernie, Warren et al consider themselves the deserving and all the rest of us are here only to be taxed.

Gerry, England
December 19, 2021 5:02 am

It is close but I would say the UK is ahead here having put so much faith in other countries supplying electricity that there is insufficient capacity in our own generation. It only takes one failure at the right time and the grid goes into panic mode to reduce demand to prevent a total blackout. There is the scenario of the rest of Europe freezing and seeing a huge demand leaving nothing to supply the UK and with low wind we are struggling and it is not even that cold. And just to make sure the moron politicians have done a sound job, we could easily run out of gas and as we are so reliant on it for generation, plant will have to be shutdown to ensure the domestic gas pipes remain full of gas. Ironic that with the power off the central heating won’t work either.

Germany is very close and their tipping point may the closure of their nuclear plants.

Reply to  Gerry, England
December 19, 2021 11:34 am

for rhe 1000th time the UK does not rely on imported electricity. This is simply a lie. If France and Germany have surplus, we import it cheaply. When they are short we fire up gas and coal and sell it to them at a very high price.

Do not mistake arbitrage for necessity.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Leo Smith
December 19, 2021 3:43 pm

Leo, IIRC, the average per MWh price for UK energy imports and exports over time are about the same. Please provide the UK wholesale electric power export/import data upon which you rely.

The wholesale spot market covering the interconnected EU/UK dictates which sources of generation are dispatched. Overproduction of subsidized wind and solar results in lower traded wholesale prices. Shortages of subsidized wind and solar results in higher traded wholesale prices. If wind and solar production are down in the UK, they are likely also down in the EU and wholesale prices go through the roof.

December 19, 2021 5:25 am

That wall has already been hit, now idiots are just battering their head against it like a bunch of panicked cattle. Moronic leftards deserve to suffer.

December 19, 2021 5:55 am

Texas is at the “wind wall.” I wouldn’t support ripping out what’s already been installed, but I wouldn’t increase the grid penetration.

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  David Middleton
December 19, 2021 10:30 am

Sunk investment, may as well run to fail
But no more

Robert of Texas
Reply to  David Middleton
December 19, 2021 2:56 pm

There are strings of wind turbines I *would* support ripping down that ruin an over-wise beautiful landscape. The wind turbines out in the corn fields can just rot in place.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  David Middleton
December 20, 2021 7:28 am

I read yesterday where the State of Oklahoma is going to allow the electric company in Oklahoma to charge each customer an extra $2 per month for the next 25 years in order to recoup the money spent during the February 2021 rolling blackouts.

Texas electric companies spent a lot more on the rolling blackouts than did Oklahoma. I’m wondering what the total cost for Texas will be?

John Garrett
December 19, 2021 6:01 am

If there was any justice in this world, it would be California— the climate crackpots of La-La Land are most deserving of freezing in the dark.

However, as a rational betting man, my money is on the U.K.

John Bell
December 19, 2021 6:03 am

Sure is crazy how the greens turn a blind eye toward how much CARBON it will take to propel this green revolution, hilarious. It is called optional starting and stopping. Think about how much fossil fuels to make all the steel, plastic, carbon fiber, cement, transportation, aluminum, paints, etc., etc.

Tony A
December 19, 2021 6:11 am

Just know that when it does happen the green blob and media are ready with a flood of releases and prepared statements to flip the argument and blame the fossil fuel industry for its inability to keep up.

December 19, 2021 6:25 am

Good points about UK, but California has my vote.
I say the Golden State because:
1) It already has had blackouts imposed by system operators
2) Populations in the states that export electricity to California are growing
3) California keeps doubling down on EV nonsense – banning gas lawnmowers and ATVs in favor of electricity.

Shanghai Dan
Reply to  c1ue
December 19, 2021 9:47 am

Yep! We’re already dependent upon outside suppliers – since we can’t supply our own. And to top it off – we pump nearly as much oil as Alaska! We have massive fossil fuel reserves here in California, and we’re trying to ban their use altogether.

If it wasn’t for the peakers (I live in Ventura, so near two – Mandalay Bay and Ormond Beach) burning natural gas – LA would be blacking out a LOT more often.

Reply to  c1ue
December 19, 2021 11:30 am

2) Populations in the states that export electricity to California are growing

Also, THOSE states are also changing their generation mix, so will have less to sell to others as time moves on and more and more states adopt the policies that California is pushing.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  kcrucible
December 20, 2021 7:37 am

A big high-pressure system could cover California and the surrounding States, who supply California’s electricity shortfall. They better not be depending on windmills.

Trygve Eklund
December 19, 2021 7:14 am

About heat pumps (air to air): My heat pumps here in Norway are actually very effective even when outdoor temperature falls to -20 deg C (-4 F). No problems with heating 240 sqare meters indoor area.

Ed Zuiderwijk
Reply to  Trygve Eklund
December 19, 2021 7:34 am

What is the efficiency at that outside temp? And what is the price per KWH electricity, I assume it is hydro-generated?

Reply to  Trygve Eklund
December 19, 2021 11:06 am

750 square feet? That’s all?

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Dennis Topczewski
December 19, 2021 11:54 am

I think 1 sq metre is 10 sq feet, so 2,400 sq feet?

Sweet Old Bob
Reply to  Dennis Topczewski
December 19, 2021 1:43 pm

To convert square meters to square feet, multiply the number by 10.76391041671 or else divide the given number by 0.0929030

Geoffrey Williams
December 19, 2021 7:52 am

This is a very realistic asssement of the facts. People have to start thinking about the rhetoric they are being fed, verses the true reality. Uk is going to be one the first places in the world where this reality hits home. (no pun intended) If the Brits had any sense they would be marching in the streets demanding an end to the nonsense, but people can be subborn and do not want to admit they are being fooled.
Antway, it’s their country and they are the ones who must either pay or freeze. As I have said before, you can lead a horse to water but . . .
ps I am an ex Brit living in Australia, we have our issues also.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Geoffrey Williams
December 20, 2021 7:41 am

“If the Brits had any sense they would be marching in the streets demanding an end to the nonsense”

They probably will be marching in the streets eventually. They will probably have to get real cold first.

December 19, 2021 8:14 am

O please, please, please let it be California! Even with SoCal being a sunny, windy desert and NorCal being a hydropower dreamland, the electricity rates keep climbing up and up. So now the Wise Ones in Sacramento will implement their desired end-game gambit…a refund credit targeted towards “low income” residents. PS Being in lockstep (goose step?) with the commufascists, the LAT has a propaganda piece about Alaska’s oceans “crisis”…plus, for good measure, a complimentary Sunday insert from the Chinese Communist Party, the ever-popular China Watch *All You Need to Know*. God help us.

December 19, 2021 8:43 am

In what way did Texas not already hit it? Last winter my sister and her husband shivered in the dark for a week in Austin. This happened because wind and solar failed, which, incredibly, shut off the pumps in the natural gas pipelines. Wall Hit

Rud Istvan
December 19, 2021 8:50 am

Germany has an out. It can simply halt the planned future decommissioning of the remainder of its coal and nuclear fleet. And it can trade electricity with Norway—renewable surplus to Norway conserves hydro, then extra hydro to Germany covering renewable shortfalls, albeit at great net cost.

UK can do neither. Most of its coal is already gone. It depends already on French interconnectors, and 13% of French nuclear capacity is off line and won’t come back for months. So my money is on UK, maybe even this winter.

Reply to  Rud Istvan
December 19, 2021 2:17 pm

A few years ago there was an article about a new company about to mine coal deposits off shore (gas extraction in place, I think, but that aspect was not very clear to me). It seemed to be saying that some such mining on a smaller scale had already been successful for a fairly long time so they were sure of success. This newly permitted operation would be on a much larger scale than any earlier ones. Then, before it could actually get started, coal mining was banned.

Regardless, the article claimed that the amount of coal already determined to exist was so large that if only 1% of it could be extracted as planned, ALL the UK’s energy needs could be met for the next 300 years.

December 19, 2021 10:11 am

I wish people would stop talking about hydro as carbon neutral, or other language, that fails to recognize the staggering carbon footprint created by it’s installation.

Reply to  Terry
December 19, 2021 2:40 pm

Yes one heckofalot of concrete to build those dams, but compared to the concrete needed to keep a wind turbine standing and the projected length of time that turbine will last the dam seems the better option. Plus the fact that falling water is much more reliable than the wind.

Tim Spence
December 19, 2021 10:49 am

Spain might be the first. The wholesale cost of electricity has risen from €70 to €320 per MWh in the space of a year. During that time Morocco has cut a gas oleoduct pipeline and Spain is relying on another from Algeria, plus wind.

Spain has closed coal mines and nuclear in the push for net Zero.

The price increases are accelarating and the plebs are not happy.

December 19, 2021 11:11 am

Germany is shutting most of its nuclear reactors in 2022.
UK has a bit of life left in most of its, and Hinkley point B is on the way
Germany has a far higher dependency on Russian gas than the UK which has a pipeline to Norway and imports from Qatar.
UK interconnectors have been used to feed power to France recently. France is short because Germany is short.
My bet is on Germany being in the deep doggy doo before UK. UK behind the rhetoric has actually been burning coal, wood, gas and anything else this winter.

UK is completely against net zero at grass roots level and Boris will be sacked along with his policy.and green concubine.

Germany is part of the EU and is democratically deficient and is now being run by a red/green left/eco alliance. it’s people actually want windmills!

UK wont go net zero unless with nuclear. Despite the political rhetoric and brain dead guardian readers like griff, the average person is all for net zero cost to him to achieve net zero emissions, but beibg gouged thousands a year to see China ignore UK efforts is not very popular.

I think UK will come close, but Germany will come closer. Nuclear – the power generation that hitherto dared not speak its name, is being discussed seriously in the UK and all over Europe. (Except Germany).

I don’t think we will have issues this winter, but next winter when nuclear capacity in germany and COVID lockdown are nearly all gone, is a different matter…

Beta Blocker
Reply to  Leo Smith
December 19, 2021 4:41 pm

Leo, that’s how I see the situation too. Germany will be first. When a firm political decision has been made by elected authorities to close a nuclear plant, that decision is next to impossible to reverse.

Here in the US., the upcoming closure of Diablo Canyon is similarly a done deal. That decision will not be reversed regardless of what kinds of crazy things happen with California’s power supply in the next three years.

My prediction remains that here in the US, shortfalls in generation capacity will be made up through quick deployment of portable peaker plants which use aeroderivative gas turbine-generator sets such as the ones manufactured by Rolls Royce and General Electric.

If I were a senior manager in Rolls Royce or General Electric, I’d be standing ready for a quick ramp up of gas-fired turbine production — assuming that the upstream supply chain could support that kind of marketing strategy.

Reply to  Beta Blocker
December 21, 2021 5:17 pm

RR sold off their gas turbine power generation business to Siemens in 2014 as it was loss making.

Bruce Cobb
December 19, 2021 11:56 am

And, this just in – Biden’s Build Lies Better bill is officially dead, thanks to Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia. Thanks, Joe! You’re the best.

John Garrett
Reply to  Bruce Cobb
December 19, 2021 3:07 pm

,,,and NPR is having a hissy fit.

December 19, 2021 12:00 pm

…don’t count on California’s politicians to level with the voters.

Why should they? It’s single party government running the entire show and has been for decades.

All of California’s energy policies and rates are approved by the CPUC and all CPUC members are appointed by the governor.

Since all of California’s recent governors are from Dynasty families that control ALL oil imports into California from Indonesia and Ecuador, do not ever expect unbiased energy policy from any of them or their appointees.

December 19, 2021 12:30 pm

Add South Australia to the nominees.
At 12 noon on Sunday, solar provided 79% of demand, wind 51%, gas 5%, with the surplus exported to Victoria. And the spot price was negative $99.90/MWhr.
However, at 7.30pm on Saturday, solar provided 5% (long summer days), wind 16%, gas 50%, with the balance of 29% imported from Victoria where coal was providing 81% of demand.

John Hultquist
December 19, 2021 12:44 pm

 20s and below, a range at which electric heat pumps basically don’t work at all. “

Actually, systems can have electric resistance heaters for such times.

The serious problem is the need for a secondary non-electric source of heat. I have a modern catalytic burner wood stove and I have a wood lot.
Others have propane. Systems have to function when the power lines go down. Having a battery fan is a good idea, to move the warmth to other rooms. A 2022 purchase, perhaps. But for now, the fan on the air-handler works on a 15 minute on/off cycle.

Robert of Texas
December 19, 2021 2:39 pm

Hey! Don’t leave Texas out of this… Texas ERCOT is at least as stupid as the U.K. government and regulators.

December 20, 2021 1:37 am

It is a mistake to consider UK and Germany as isolated nations when it comes to renewable energy (not least because Angela and Boris this year signed the agreement for the UK/Germany HVDC link).

The western European energy system and market is a highly interconnected and interdependent entity: electricity prices are set by the Europe wide day ahead market on the basis of predicted renewable availability.

It is intended that all nations will use electricity generated by renewables in other nations.

for the UK specifically, the next ten years will be marked by massive expansion of offshore wind, with 30GW of new capacity firmly embedded in a planning pipeline. This will be more widely distributed and further offshore – and I note a similar expansion in the waters around Eire.

a whole range of new UK energy solutions is just kicking off and entering the trial period, with more investment in tidal turbines, hydrogen generation and grid injection, carbon capture, pumped storage and really large grid scale batteries.

This should certainly see us through the shut down of our last, now tiny, coal power usage and the first reactor retirements.

and in the 20 years after 2030 we should move on from the wind/gas/links model to Net Zero.

Climate believer
Reply to  griff
December 20, 2021 9:29 am

Oh…. watch out…Grifters off to the promised land…


December 20, 2021 6:48 am

Somebody sent me this.

Its not US or UK in crisis, its the whole EU

John Garrett
Reply to  Leo Smith
December 20, 2021 7:14 am

Those wholesale prices are 8-9× those in the U.S.

Has anybody seen any media reports on the current cost of LNG in the U.K., the E.U. and East Asia??

LNG at the National Balancing Point in the U.K., the Title Transfer Point (E.U.) and East Asia is well over $30.00/MMBTU.

I haven’t heard or seen a peep out of NPR, the Associated Press, Pravda (a/k/a the New York Times), ABC, MSNBC, CNN, CBS, the WaPo, NBC, the La-La Times, PBS, et al.

December 20, 2021 7:47 am

Re: Darwin

I would like to suggest two books that I found informative – at least from a laymans perspective.

“The Beak of the Finch” by Wiener which I think illustrates the capacity for adaptation within a species rather than “full” evolution.


“The Kingdom of Speech” by Thomas Wolfe which seemed to provide a lot of material about the
controversies associated with Darwins acceptance – even if his conclusion leaves you wondering?

all IMO.

Tom Abbott
December 20, 2021 8:14 am

I think it is a race between the UK and Germany.

Reply to  Tom Abbott
December 20, 2021 6:48 pm

The race to the bottom.
Who’s bottom is largest has always been a problem especially when it comes to assessing the emissive outputs of Biden and Bojo.

December 20, 2021 7:38 pm

The UK; and the sooner the better. It’s going to take thousands publicly freezing to death very publicly for the electorate to come to its senses.

December 20, 2021 8:16 pm

In fact it very much looks like what is at risk is not the UK, but the whole of NW Europe, as the UK continues to supply France with electricity.

Screenshot at 2021-12-21 04-15-02.png
Matthew Sykes
December 20, 2021 11:49 pm

The UK. It has no gas storage, because it always produced its own, and is very exposed to short term price variation.

We are screwed basically. We dont have anywhere near enough pumped storage, although we have the ideal geography for it, to store wind when we have it.

I can see coal plants being reopened in spring when this really starts to bite, and when the energy price cap is revisited, and raised, massively.

Rich Lentz
December 22, 2021 2:36 pm

Thirty Five years ago I moved to Nebraska. The City I live in was 15 miles away from a nuclear power plant and another was only 60 Miles away, for over 25 years. outages were rare, very rare. I even had to get out the manual to set my digital alarm clock after we lost power. Ten years ago they shut down the closer NPP – To sell Green Energy . Since that date I have had an outage on the average of once a month since then. Two years ago the local Electric Utility announced that they were now receiving 30% of their electrical power from “Renewable Green Sources. And since that time I have had at least 3 momentary outages every month.

Lawrence Ayres
December 22, 2021 6:13 pm

I don’t care who wins this race but that they win it sooner rather than later. The only science that politicians understand is where the data cannot be manipulated to suit their agenda and that is when the voters realise they have been dudded and start voting for people who will give them what they want or need. A run of severe winters with blackouts and cold houses will speed up the transition to reliable fossil and nuclear power.In the current competition Boris will win easily. He was conservative but then married a rabid leftist.

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